Durkan welcomes Derry’s Vital Venue

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Derry’s MP has welcomed the Department of Social Development’s near £5million investment that will create a 2000 seater temporary venue for Derry’s year as cultural capital.

SDLP MP Mark Durkan says yesterday’s announcement was “significant” for the City of Culture year.

The £4.6m ‘Vital Venue’ at Ebrington will provide a covered facility capable of accommodating audiences in excess of 2,000 people for the major UK City of Culture 2013 events.

Department of Social Development (DSD) minister Nelson McCausland yesterday said the Vital Venue “will provide the centrepiece for delivery of the events programme as an essential additional space that will host both large scale local community-driven events and events of an international standard.”

The new £4.6m investment by the DSD is in addition to the £10million capital investment already announced for the city of culture year.

Mr Durkan said he welcomed “this significant announcement of investment.”

“Indeed, it was a former SDLP DSD Minister - Alex Attwood - who responded before anyone else and showed good anticipation when he put in bids for City of Culture – which offered a £10m funding package for organisations in Derry to bid for as part of the 2013 celebrations.

“One of his key stipulations also involved the need to create innovation and flexibility around venues. I am therefore pleased that his former Department has now followed through on this,” he said.